Yang Yahoo!s out

Finally it happened: Jerry Yang has left the CEO slot at Yahoo! This guy should never have been in that job beyond 1998 in any case; few people can play the loveable geek in addition to the hard-nosed businessman, and Yang’s no Bill Gates. Too nice a guy; no fire in the belly.

The boards are alive with who’ll be the next CEO; I think there’s a deeper question. In what way is Yahoo! even relevant to today’s web? I can’t think of one. In technology there is always a sector leader and little room for second place; Yahoo!’s arguably not even in second place to Google any more; possibly as low as fourth. And a tie-up with Microsoft (probably back on the cards today) won’t help; merging two mediocrities just results in something that lumbers.

I haven’t used Yahoo! so far this century, and don’t have plans to. The story of Yahoo! isn’t about bad management, it’s about becoming irrelevant.

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